Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Mice and Spiders

I once overheard a remark which started me thinking about Christmas in a new way. Until then I had seen it through the medium of the Christmas card, Christmas flowers, snow and a plentiful sprinkle of glitter-frost that we could buy at 2 pence a packet… The remark which made me begin to think was “There must have been mice and spiders in the stable at Bethlehem.” Yes, Christ was born not into a fanciful world, but into our real world that includes mice and spiders.

Read the gospels for Christmas and you will see the likeness between Christ’s day and ours. It is almost shocking. You recognize Herod, the murder of the innocents, the flight into Egypt, the homeless refugees in a strange land, the young mother trudging from door to door, seeking somewhere to give birth to her baby, and posted on every door in Bethlehem the notice, so familiar, “No vacancy.” The likeness is also in the minds of people. Christ came into a world sickened with persecution, obsessed with fear….not unlike our own. 

Nativity by Lauren Ford. Excerpt from an article by Caryll Houselander, 1945.